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IL DUI lawyerIn the state of Illinois, thousands of people are arrested and charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, each and every year. According to Illinois state law, a DUI conviction constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor charge. Unfortunately for those charged with driving under the influence, there are a number of factors that can lead to a DUI charge being elevated to a felony, these factors are known as aggravating factors. Below we will examine some of the reasons why you could be facing felony charges after driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

What Constitutes an Aggravated DUI

If a DUI charge is elevated from a misdemeanor to a felony, it is now categorized as an aggravated DUI. The most common reason for an aggravated DUI charge is that the defendant is facing their third or subsequent DUI charge. Other common aggravating factors include a DUI resulting in great bodily harm to another party, driving under the influence while your license is suspended or revoked due to previous DUI charges, and driving under the influence without a valid driver’s license. A new state law passed in January 2019 states that a driver can be charged with an aggravated DUI if they are apprehended while driving the wrong direction down a one-way street, while intoxicated.

The Impact of an Aggravated DUI

While any DUI charge should be taken seriously, an aggravated DUI can drastically impact a person’s life. First and foremost, having a felony charge on your criminal record can significantly diminish one’s ability to secure housing, employment, and even loans. Secondly, a mandatory prison sentence cannot be reduced or suspended when a person is facing felony DUI charges. For those that need to drive their vehicle in order to get to work or drop their children off at school, an aggravated DUI conviction will likely result in a 10-year license revocation. If you are facing felony DUI charges, it is critically important to speak with a knowledgeable legal professional.

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Posted on in DUI

IL DUI lawyerIn the state of Illinois, more than 26,000 drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, throughout 2018. While a standard DUI conviction will constitute a Class A misdemeanor charge, some circumstances can result in felony charges. When a DUI is elevated to a felony, it is legally referred to as an aggravated DUI. Below we will examine some of the most common aggravated DUIs, and the potential legal ramifications of a charge of such magnitude. If you have been charged with driving under the influence, it is time to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer.

The Most Common Aggravated DUIs

In the vast majority of cases, a DUI will be elevated to an aggravated DUI due to increased level of negligence. It is important to note though, that a third or subsequent DUI charge will automatically be elevated to an aggravated DUI. A driver that is charged with their third DUI will face Class 2 felony charges. A DUI resulting in great bodily harm to another party will also result in felony charges, even if the charge is the driver’s first alcohol-related traffic violation. It should be noted that a person charged with a DUI resulting in injury will face a minimum two-year license revocation period.

In other cases, a person can face felony DUI charges for failing to comply with Illinois state law prior to getting behind the wheel. If a driver is charged with driving under the influence and fails to present a valid driver’s license or permit, or lacks proper vehicle liability insurance, they will face Class 4 felony charges.

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IL DUI lawyerSome people believe that a first-time DUI conviction will not come with significant legal ramifications. This notion could not be further from the truth. While it is true that DUI charges will increase in severity for repeat offenders, a first-time DUI offender can face life-changing implications in the event of a conviction. Below we will examine some of the possible ramifications of a DUI conviction and how you need to react to a charge. If you are facing DUI charges, contact a skilled criminal defense attorney immediately.

The Consequences

The first thing you need to understand is that a first-time DUI conviction constitutes a Class A Misdemeanor in the state of Illinois. Along with potential fines, drug and alcohol classes, community service, and even potential jail time, a conviction comes with a one-year license revocation period. It should be noted that in the state of Illinois, 91% of all drivers arrested for DUI in 2017 lost their driving privileges for some period of time. Outside of the concrete legal consequences, a DUI conviction can result in serious rises in your insurance rates. It is important to understand that there are a number of circumstances that can lead to an elevation of the charge from a Class A Misdemeanor to a Class 4 Felony.

How an Attorney Can Help

Recognizing the legal consequences of even a first-time conviction, it is important to contact a trustworthy and knowledgeable attorney as soon as you are charged with a DUI. First and foremost, a skilled attorney will give you the best chance of avoiding a conviction altogether. Your attorney will work with you in examining the initial traffic stop and the arrest process. If the officer acted in an unethical or unprofessional manner, you may have the charges dropped. For instance, if you were forced to submit to chemical testing. If a conviction cannot be avoided, a quality legal professional can assist you in regaining your driving privileges. A first-time DUI offender can regain their driving privileges through the installation of a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID).

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Posted on in DUI

IL DUI lawyerThroughout the state of Illinois, upwards of 25,000 people are charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, on an annual basis. Despite the large number of DUI arrests made each year, a DUI charge is not something to be taken lightly. A first-time DUI offender can face a number of serious consequences, most notably fines and possible loss of driving privileges. Once a person has been convicted of one DUI though, the stakes are raised significantly. Having multiple DUI convictions on one’s personal record, can seriously alter a person’s life, and significantly impact their livelihood. Below, we will examine the impacts of multiple DUI convictions, and how to react if you are facing inebriated driving charges.

The Consequences of Multiple Convictions

Given the inherent dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol (more than 300 people were fatally injured in crashes involving drunk drivers in Illinois, throughout 2017), it should come as no surprise that the charges rise significantly in severity if a person is convicted multiple times. According to Illinois state law, a first-time DUI offense will result in a Class A misdemeanor and a one-year license revocation period.

If a person is convicted of a DUI within a twenty-year period of their first conviction, the charges begin to be more severe. While a second DUI conviction still constitutes a Class A misdemeanor, the party charged will face a five-year license revocation period and a minimum of five days in prison or 240 hours of community service.

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IL defense lawyerWhen a person makes the decision to drive recklessly, they are making the decision to endanger other travelers as well as themselves. Recognizing this, the state of Illinois punishes reckless driving incredibly harshly. Reckless driving is defined in 625 ILCS 5/11-503, as negligent vehicular operation that willfully disregards the safety of others. According to Illinois state law, reckless driving usually results in a Class A Misdemeanor. Due to the severity of the legal consequences of a reckless driving charge, it is critically important to seek out quality legal representation immediately.

Common Forms of Reckless Driving

In addition to a misdemeanor charge on a person’s permanent record, a reckless driving charge can also result in rises in a person’s insurance rates. In some instances, reckless driving will result in a license revocation or suspension.

Aggravated Speeding: If a person is apprehended while driving 35 miles per hour over the legal speed limit, they will likely be charged with aggravated speeding. Aggravated speeding results in a Class A misdemeanor and is one of the more common forms of reckless driving. The primary reason for aggravated speeding being defined as a form of reckless driving is due to the fact that traveling at such high speeds can impact a person’s reaction time and correspondingly the safety and wellbeing of other travelers.

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